Summer Adventures


We are finally back at Big Woods after 3 months of intense travel!  In the past three months we have lived into our theme song “On the Road Again”, starting every new leg of the journey playing it out with kids singing along!  Between May 24 to August 23, our little missionary family has driven over 9,946 miles, spent over 167 hours in the car (of which Bridget drove about an hour and a half), slept in 24 different places (and only 16 nights in our own beds), driven through 19 states, visited Haiti, Canada and Mexico, saw 43 states license plates (including Hawaii) and most importantly connected with countless friends, family, mission partners and missionaries! What an adventure it has been!  We have felt the Holy Spirit’s presence with us each step of the way, blessing conversations and interactions, building us up and encouraging us, calling us deeper into the heart of Jesus.  Our kids have enjoyed every minute of it, often asking, “Who are we having dinner with tonight?” and “Where are we gonna sleep tonight?” They are real troopers! It’s been a blast, but in the words of John Denver, “Hey, it’s good to be back home again!”

We began our travels in May, heading to New Mexico for Erik’s aunt’s funeral.  We decided to take a little detour on the way to visit Erik’s Aunt Linda and Uncle Terry in Oklahoma and stopped in Houston to visit Bridget’s Aunt Peggy on the way home.  Lots of family time!

After about a week at home, we hit the road to Augusta, Georgia for Bridget to finish her School of Spiritual Direction.  Erik spent the two weeks having fun with the kiddos!

After the School we took a few days to visit Camp Hidden Lake, Covecrest, friends in Tampa and Miami on our way to fly out to Haiti.

We were so blessed to get to spend 2 weeks in Haiti with our missionaries there.  We put on a retreat for them in Port Au Prince and then went to their base and lived life with them for 10 days.  We celebrated Lena’s 5th Birthday while we were there!

After Haiti we flew back into Miami and drove back up through Florida, stopping for a quick visit in Pensacola with the Benzinger family.  We made it back to Big Woods in time to have a quick visit from Bridget’s sister Holly and her family.  We spent a week at Big Woods and then back on the road again!

This time we headed north to visit family and mission partners!  First stop was St. Louis with Bridget’s sister Julie and her family!

Big excitement in Michigan!  We got to attend Sister Peter Thomas’ final vows!  She had been a summer missionary at Covercrest in 2009 when Erik was camp coordinator.  Such a beautiful joy-filled day!  We even got a tour of the convent from Sister Peter Grace, another summer missionary from that same summer staff!  We had a blessed visit with friends and mission partners in Michigan and then traveled further north to Canada!

Growing up, Bridget’s family always spent their vacation at her aunt and uncle’s cabin in Canada.  Some of her favorite and most dear memories are from her times spent there in the rustic cabin with no TV or electronics, just spending time as a family, swimming, fishing, boating, hiking and playing games.  This year was the first time that we were able to bring the kids up to enjoy the same beauty, peace and family time.  After 5 days at the cabin, we drove to Ohio for a visit with the rest of Bridget’s family.  It happened to be Hall of Fame week in Canton, so Erik and the kids got to experience the Football Hall of Fame Parade for the first time!  Lots of family fun again and then on the road heading South to Mexico!


We traveled to Allende to lead a mission trip, which was so blessed.  After the trip we made several stops visiting friends before arriving home to Big Woods on August 23.  Hey, it’s good to be back home again!!




~ by martinsonmission on August 28, 2018.

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